THE STORY OF ASIA PACIFIC BREWERIES
In 1930, Heineken and Fraser
and Neave joinED forces and
establishED a joint venture to
build a brewery in Singapore.
In 1931, a tiger was born. Tiger
beer became the first beer that
was Asian in origin yet possessed
all the qualities of a top-notch
Western brewed beer.
Since 1931, our
path has been one
and the relentless
desire to be a leading
brewer in the Asia
Some would say we are a lucky
company, being in the right place at
the right time, with the right people
and products. However, we believe
we have made our own luck.
We invest in people that share this
same spirit of adventure and
have this passion for success.
We believe in the power of our
brands, we are entrepreneurial in our
marketing and we stay close to our
consumers. We don’t sell products,
we sell a lifestyle.
Opening night at the brewery
“Over 200 guests attended and they
were given as much beer as they
desired, and an eloquent tribute to the
new beverage lay in the fact that many
who were not regular drinkers asked
for a second, while others had a third.”
Straits Times, Singapore 1932
THE LAUNCH OF TIGER CUB
During World War Two, there was
a severe shortage of raw materials,
including glass, malted barley, hops
and yeast. For the business to survive,
the Tiger team had the ingenuity to
launch a lighter beer called Tiger Cub.
It wasn’t as strong as the original brew
but having some beer was better than
having no beer at all. Tiger Cub was
retired in 1947.
03WINNING THE WORLD OVER – A TIGER IS BORN
Our first international adventure
In 1958, we had our first offshore
expansion and purchased the South
Pacific Brewery in Papua New Guinea.
Since then, SP Lager, Papua New
Guinea’s first premium beer brand,
has gained unprecedented popularity
amongst the local population.
A BREWERY FOR A DOLLAR
In 1978, South Pacific Brewery was
losing money because of a heavy
discount war with San Miguel.
Desmond Neill was tasked with
selling South Pacific Brewery for $1.
When he reached Port Moresby,
he realised the competition was faring
far worse, saw the long term potential
in Papua New Guinea and negotiated
to buy San Miguel for $1 instead.
Today, South Pacific Brewery is APB’s
second most profitable operating
company. Now that’s the Tiger spirit!
An explosive moment
In 1994, a volcanic eruption destroyed
the airport in Rabaul and covered most
of the town with heavy ashfall. With
only nineteen hours of warning before
the eruption, we chartered a jet and
evacuated many of the locals away from
the danger zone.
WE are proud of
spirit. we have seized
others have not.
We are a growth-focused company
that dares to do things differently.
In the early 90’s, we recognised the
limitations of the small markets we
were operating in. We had to expand
our horizons. With a sense of courage
and conviction, we set off to build
relationships, breweries and markets
around the region.
We are calculated risk takers with
a relentless energy. We built five green
field brewery operations in five different
countries all within a year and a half.
We all appreciate the teams that went
out to the regions and put in the
hard work in sometimes difficult
circumstances that helped us to build
the dynamic regional footprint we
have today. We have a history of
people that have built their careers
by building the company.
Today we see the benefits of our
leadership position in these emerging
markets. Our strategy has served
us well and we retain this pioneering
spirit in everything we do.
04 WINNING THE WORLD OVER – THE STORY OF ASIA PACIFIC BREWERIES
WINNING THE WORLD OVER – THE STORY OF ASIA PACIFIC BREWERIES0606
Setting an international
In 1993, we were the first western
company to sign a joint venture
agreement with the Vietnamese
government. That agreement became
the template for other joint ventures
negotiated in Vietnam ever since.
At that time, Tiger was considered
to be the drink of capitalism.
WE PRIDE OURSELVES
IN OUR ABILITY TO
We build relationships with our
customers, our distributors, our
suppliers and ultimately our consumers.
We invest a great deal of time and
energy in these relationships. We are
tenacious in making sure they work
and we always take a long term view.
We love to meet people and we are
always hospitable and responsible
hosts. As leaders in the markets in
which we operate, we always give
more than is expected of us.
We have established joint ventures
with many other companies across the
region. We are always appreciative of
the unique strengths our partners bring
to the table. We grow together and
create value in the process.
THE DIVERSITY OF
OUR PEOPLE IS OUR
We have the widest regional footprint
of any international brewer. We are part
of a global framework of breweries,
yet we are local in our content.
Our footprint enables us to prosper
across our markets in both good
times and bad.
We are a unique Singaporean company
that has moved very quickly to become
an Asian multinational. We are not
traditional. We are prepared to
push beyond the borders more than
most companies. In fact, we are really
a multi-local business.
In the early 90’s, we had five breweries
in three countries. Twenty years later,
we have grown to more than thirty
breweries in fourteen countries.
Y CULTURES ALL ENJOY DRINKING OUR B
In the process, we have been able
to provide our people with the
opportunities to learn and develop
their skills within these markets and
demonstrate their adaptability and
Today the diversity of our management
teams across the Group is a key
strength of our business and we
encourage the free flow of talent
across all our operating companies.
This is an important part of our growth.
We celebrate the fact that so many
different cultures enjoy drinking
A United Nations of beer
Many of our staff have worked in
different countries. We have Russians
working in Papua New Guinea,
Vietnamese working in Singapore,
New Zealanders working in Thailand
and Uzbekistanis working in Mongolia.
Our leaders, like the bubbles in our
beer, rise from within.
A DIVERSE LEADERSHIP
In the past our key leaders were mainly
sourced from APB Singapore or were
Heineken expatriates. Today we have
a wide variety of leaders sharing
different backgrounds, essential for
any successful company in a fast and
08 WINNING THE WORLD OVER – THE STORY OF ASIA PACIFIC BREWERIES
TIGER IS our flagship brand. For more than
80 years, Tiger’s strong brand equity,
rigorous adherence to quality and innovative
marketing initiatives have fuelled its
popularity in the East and West.
Tiger is brewed in more countries in Asia than any other
Asian beer and exported to over seventy countries worldwide.
With over forty international gold medals for quality and taste,
Tiger positions itself as the reward for winners.
Tiger is the second most recognisable Singaporean brand
in the world.
WINNING THE WORLD OVER – THE STORY OF ASIA PACIFIC BREWERIES10
With worldwide acclaim and a host
of international medals, Tiger has
travelled the world and come back
to Asia with renewed respect at home.
After Tiger’s initial success in the United
Kingdom, Heineken UK suggested
to APB that they manage the brand
locally. It’s subsequent success was
never a foregone conclusion, but rather
the result of ten years’ hard work from
an intrepid team who visited pubs
and bars up and down the country,
including London, Birmingham,
Edinburgh, Manchester and Dublin.
They persuaded barmen across the
UK to recommend Tiger, the cool
taste of Asia, to their friends and their
customers. Ten years of persistence to
create an overnight success, with Tiger
available in 6,000 establishments!
Tiger Translate is a showcase of the
best emerging creativity in the Asia
Pacific region with work that challenges,
entertains, engages and inspires.
We uncover young Asian talent in
music, art and design and give them a
chance to perform on the world stage.
By keeping Tiger Beer top of mind,
our imaginative Tiger artists translate
themes into visual masterpieces.
Tiger Street Football is an international
tournament that brings together the
best and brightest street football
players from around the world. It takes
place in five countries across Asia and
is shown on live television. Teams play
on a caged football pitch in a carnival
atmosphere and battle it out to
progress to the final game to be
crowned ‘Kings of the Street’.
11TIME FOR A TIGER
Available in over
170 countries on
the planet, Heineken
possesses the widest
presence of any
Heineken is commited to surprising and
delighting consumers everywhere.
Its quality and reputation have proven
to be an ideal growth driver and the
brand resonates around the globe
with its internationalism, quality and
Distinctive in its green bottle,
its exclusive image builds rapport
with sophisticated consumers
everywhere who appreciate the
Heineken experience and its close
association with premier sporting
and music events.
VIETNAM – A FIVE STAR PERFORMER
APB has managed the Heineken brand
in Vietnam from the late 1980’s.
In those days beer marketing was
easy – put some western ads on TV
and have Europeans drink Heineken in
restaurants and coffee shops. From this
humble brand plan, Vietnam is now a
top five worldwide Heineken market.
Today the marketing plans are a little
THE HEINEKEN EXPERIENCE
The consistent Heineken experience
is reinforced in every market. Only
the best quality raw materials brewed
lovingly and long and released only
when perfect. Served in a chilled glass
with the beer to the top of the star,
foam skimmed, served on a Heineken
coaster and enjoyed by all.
12 WINNING THE WORLD OVER – THE STORY OF ASIA PACIFIC BREWERIES
WE operate A
MODEL. WE ARE ABOUT
FUN AND ABOUT
We have a strong portfolio of over forty
brands that we manage and build.
With this diversity of brands, we have
flexibility in the marketplace, giving us
a strong competitive advantage.
We control our own destiny by shaping
these brands. Collectively, they form
a combination of global, regional
and local brews that cater to every
preference and drinking occasion in
their respective markets.
We constantly challenge ourselves
to ensure our brands are keeping pace
with our consumers. Brand diversity is
the key to meeting consumers’ varied
and increasingly sophisticated needs.
We constantly excite the markets, cater
to new demands and seek innovation in
developing new products and variants.
WE ARE BRAND
14 WINNING THE WORLD OVER – THE STORY OF ASIA PACIFIC BREWERIES
PREMIUM LAGER BEER
BREWERIES IN SINGAPORE • VIETNAM
INDONESIA • CAMBODIA • MALAYSIA
SRI LANKA • MONGOLIA • NEW ZEALAND
NEW CALEDONIA • PAPUA NEW GUINEA
LAOS • SRI LANKA • SOLOMON ISLANDS
Thailand • CHINA
Indonesia’s iconic beer
Bintang is Indonesia’s favourite beer.
Production of Bintang began at its
Surabaya brewery in 1931 and since
then Bintang has achieved success
and leadership with their quality
brews. It has won many awards and
recently picked up a Gold Medal at the
2011 Brewing Industry International
Awards. Widely available throughout
the Indonesian archipelago, Bintang
establishes bonds amongst Indonesians
and celebrates togetherness.
A drinking war
ABC is by far the largest premium
brand and only stout in Cambodia.
It was built can by can by our intrepid
export team by visiting both the
Government army and the Khmer
Rouge in the 80’s and 90’s. ABC was
seen as an essential brew to enable
the two factions to meet on occasion.
And while we can’t claim to have
assisted in reconciling both sides, ABC
was certainly part of the celebrations.
Crafted to perfection
Archipelago offers world beer
experiences beyond the ordinary
for beer enthusiasts. We begin with
an idea often themed to an occasion
or a brewing style rich in heritage. The
Archipelago team then brings together
skill, innovation, collaboration, passion
and fun to create a boutique range of
handcrafted world beers.
15WE ARE BRAND BUILDERS
16 WINNING THE WORLD OVER – THE STORY OF ASIA PACIFIC BREWERIES
A world first in New Zealand
Morton Coutts was the founder of
the DB Brewery in New Zealand.
In the 1930’s, he investigated the
nature of yeast, the most important
ingredient in any brewing process.
Coutts speculated that yeast could
be properly controlled and this led him
to create the wort stabilisation process.
He then separated the fermentation
into stages. In the first stage the
yeast grew and in the second the
fermentation began. The yeast was
thus encouraged to either grow or
produce alcohol. As a result, Coutts
created a continuous flow between
the two fermentation processes.
DB became the only company
in the world to master continuous
fermentation, incredibly economic
in the brewing process as it uses less
raw materials, water and electricity.
The end result? DB challenged the
way the world brews beer and sold
this technology internationally.
Bottle returns in South China
The success of our Anchor brand on
Hainan Island ensured a successful
expansion of the brand into
Guangdong province. However, we
were selling Anchor in returnable
quart bottles and needless to say
those bottles were not returning from
Guangdong. Realising the potential
of the brand in South China, we set
up a returnable bottle system to get
the bottles back to Hainan. After an
interesting week, we had signed up
a number of bottle collectors and
within a month the empty bottles
were arriving back in Hainan. In most
countries, it would take six to twelve
months to set up a system like that!
TO QUALITY IS SECOND
Our beers are brewed under the
supervision of our own international
technical experts, who can call upon
more than a century’s experience
of European brewing excellence.
We use only the finest ingredients and
maintain the most stringent brewing
standards. We have over 250 quality
control checks that cover every stage
of the brewing process.
Over the years, we have won many
prestigious quality awards both locally
and internationally. In yet another
recognition of our commitment to
brewing excellence, we were recently
named the world’s Champion Brewery
in the Large Brewing Company
Category in the prestigious Brewers’
Association World Beer Cup.
• We are results
• We take pride in
what we do
• We are committed
to being the best
We are committed to being the best.
Our hard work and determination to
succeed has resulted in a financially
strong company with the kind
of dynamic growth that captures
We have clear market leadership
positions and we take pride in being
the best. We are motivated to
succeed and we drive ourselves
to constantly improve.
We have a great reputation for being
a professional well-run operation and
we are proud of our achievements.
“It’s a very fast dynamic
It’s got a good clear sense
of direction and being able
to contribute to that success
and even at times help shape
that direction of success is
Russell Browne, Marketing – DB Export &
Emerging Brands, New Zealand
“Since the day I joined APB
I realised how dynamic
the place is. It’s filled
with passionate people.
Working here I have
everything is different, and
people just draw their energy
from the passion that is APB.”
Aaron Lim, Corporate Communications, Singapore“What excites me is that
it’s a very competitive
environment. It keeps you
keen, it keeps you on your
toes and it also makes sure
that every day and every
week is different. There’s
always some challenge that
you’ve got, and I think that
overcoming those challenges
gives you a great deal
Andrew Lamont, Commercial Director, Thailand
“I enjoy working here because
it is a very well organised
company. We have a very
team, they are working close
to the people, they treat
people like a family.”
Mr Tai, Sales Manager, Vietnam
18 WINNING THE WORLD OVER – THE STORY OF ASIA PACIFIC BREWERIES
• We are like a family
• We find alignment
• We don’t allow
others to fail
We have a strong sense of culture
and camaraderie. We roll up our
sleeves, look after each other and
never let our colleagues fail. We
work hard and we play hard together.
We have great people, a great
environment in which to work and
a great place to grow and belong.
“I love this company because
we enjoy working together
with open communication
and truthful attitudes.
I strongly believe we will
progress well because our
team works very hard with
a good responsible spirit.”
Nguyen Thi Doi, Training Manager, Vietnam
“The company is really
focused. We set goals
for ourselves within the
company and we work
hard together as a team
to achieve these goals.”
Patronila Paisi, Group TPM & Quality Assurance
Coordinator, Papua New Guinea
“We encourage people
to develop their problem
solving skills, communication
and collaboration skills.
You develop your ability
to build relations with your
customers, your partners and
Durbek Sattarov, Commercial Director, Mongolia
“I enjoy working here
because we’re just like family.
Most people have work
experience of more than
ten years and therefore have
a lot of experience to share.
They are always happy to
help you whenever you
have a question. It really
Su Zhizhuang, Packaging Control, Singapore
• WE VALUE DIVERSITY
• WE LIKE HAVING FUN
• WE STAY CONNECTED
We work together to achieve our goals.
We are like the United Nations of
brewing. Our diversity requires us
to be open-minded and to value each
We have many important partnerships
that we nurture, both inside and
outside of our company. We take into
consideration the work life and home
life of our people.
We enjoy getting involved outside
of work and take the time to give back
to our communities.
“I also work very closely with
the sales and the brewing
team where we are highly
encouraged to communicate
openly and also respect
each other which is very
important because then
we can resolve any issues
Susan Leong, Marketing – Archipelago, Singapore
“I graduated last year and
I really like the open culture
here. The management here
is always interested in what
I have to say, my ideas my
opinions and suggestions
about how we can work
together to improve
Cassey Maninaka, Communications Officer,
Papua New Guinea
“We’re a really great team.
We work hard and play hard.
It’s a really good work life
balance as well, which is really
important to me.”
Jen McIndoe, Marketing – Monteiths, New Zealand
“I really enjoy working together
with so many people from
Josie Wong, Marketing Manager, China
20 WINNING THE WORLD OVER – THE STORY OF ASIA PACIFIC BREWERIES
• WE LIKE TO learn
• make the best of the
• WE Build our future
We enjoy that our work is challenging.
We are an adventurous company and
we encourage our people to take on
new challenges and responsibilities
so that they can learn and grow.
We encourage our people to go
beyond their comfort zones and take
on projects earlier in their careers than
they would with other companies.
Our people are exposed to all aspects
of our business and they become
well-rounded individuals in the process.
“What I enjoy most about
working in this company
is probably the work
environment is very
challenging. It keeps me
on my toes most of the time
and pushes me to learn as
much as possible and I can
see it’s a very good baseline
for my growth.”
Risa Kopi, Brewing, Papua New Guinea
“I’ve had a variety of roles
really. I’ve been quite
fortunate. I’ve worked in
the laboratory, that’s where
I started in quality, and then
I moved into brewing as a
trainee brewer, so I learnt the
ropes there and then moved
Natasha O’Brien, Supply Chain Packaging
Manager, New Zealand
“The company has a very
dynamic and challenging
There are many career
I think a successful company
is a company focusing
on people development.”
Dao Cong Phuoc, Packaging Manager, Vietnam
“It is basically a great training
ground. We are encouraged
to try different things through
trial and error. In this way
both the organisation and
the individual can grow
and develop organically.”
Dennis Yeo, Accountant, Singapore
Asia Pacific Breweries is committed to
giving back to the society. We believe
in improving the lives of communities
in which we operate. The set up of the
APB Foundation in 1994 anchors this
The Foundation gives back via three
tenets – the arts, education and caring
for the needy. Flagship projects under
these tenets are designed to plug gaps,
achieve long-term impact and benefits
for our communities. The Signature
Art Prize is the first of its kind in the
regional arts scene that recognises
excellence in contemporary visual arts
in 24 Asia Pacific countries. The APB
Foundation Scholarship which caters
to tertiary students with disabilities is
unique in Singapore. We have since
had 19 scholars from various fields and
the graduates are gainfully contributing
back to society.
The spirit of giving, however, is not
limited to the Foundation but has also
extended to our operating companies
and staff. Our staff has helped raised
funds for charities and volunteered
in community activities, including the
Foundation’s flagship grocery delivery
programme which is benefitting more
than 200 needy families and 150 elderly
To ensure that we continuously meet
society’s needs, we evaluate our
programmes half yearly and we look
out for opportunities to give back to
the society via the Foundation’s three
tenets and partnering like-minded
stakeholders in regional CSR projects
focusing on water and education.
For more information on the APB
Foundation, visit our website at
Our breweries also play a vital role
in giving back to the communities
in which they operate. Being socially
responsible, each of them gives
support to various social, educational
and environmental causes in their
respective countries. We encourage
the responsible consumption of
alcohol, undertake sustainable
reporting and reduce water and energy.
22 WINNING THE WORLD OVER – THE STORY OF ASIA PACIFIC BREWERIES
The Next Chapter
Asia Pacific is the place to be. Dynamic
growth in the region has seen dynamic
growth for us as a company.
With this growth, we now have the
largest footprint in Asia Pacific and the
most iconic portfolio of brands.
The year 2012 marks a new chapter in
our illustrious history. After 81 years, we
are moving from a joint venture between
Heineken and Fraser and Neave, to
becoming a Heineken owned company.
As part of the Heineken global family
there will be many exciting opportunities
and our pioneering spirit, passion and
determination will enable us to take on
the challenges of this changing world,
just as it has in the past.
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